The topic for week 15 was Taxes, but, since tax records aren’t available here in Australia, and I haven’t come across any while researching the branches of the family from the United States, I decided to turn to Trove, and to make this 52 Ancestor’s post a Trove Tuesday post as well.
While searching Trove for any articles about taxes (and there are a lot), I came across this one about the Queer Taxes in England
The mention of Napoleon made me think about what I had read in “The Somerset Years” by Florence Chuk, about how the heavy taxation of the Napoleonic Wars was one of the factors that led to the decision to emigrate. My Whimpey ancestors had lived in Somerset for centuries, where clothmaking was one of the major industries. After the Industrial Revolution, clothmaking declined in Somerset, and due to the Agrarian Revolution farm workers were forced off the land. Jobs in Somerset became scarce, and the taxation of the Napoleonic Wars made the situation even worse. This had led my 2x great grandfather Joseph Whimpey, and his brothers, to leave Somerset, and go to work in the coal mines in Wales. When the government started offering assisted passages to Australia, to attract workers, my 2x great grandfather Joseph Whimpey, his wife Margaret, his brother John, and John’s wife Caroline, decided to migrate to Australia.